FOX inks multi-year deal with Asia Broadcast Satellite
Joseph O'Halloran | 14-06-2013

Just as it made major changes to its senior management, FOX International Channels has signed a multi-year and multi-million dollar contract agreement with Asia Broadcast Satellite (ABS).

Under the terms of the deal, FIC will buy MCPC services, playout and satellite capacity on ABS-1 and ABS-2 satellites for operations in the Philippines. The service will start in the latter part of 2013 on ABS-1 satellite and will transition to ABS-2 after it is launched later in the year.

ABS is confident that after making what it calls “significant investment” on the ground infrastructure and in the installation of digital television playout facilities in Subic Bay, Philippines, as well as Hong Kong it will be able to support FIC’s playout requirements.

Moreover it claims that it can do so with what it calls “the most advanced” automation systems, playout servers, encoders, multiplexing and encryption systems in the industry. Indeed, the Subic Bay facility was enhanced with its services specifically tailored to support FIC’s Philippines operations whereby signals will be relayed to the local teleport and then uplinked to the ABS-1 satellite. ABS will also provide an integrated broadcast 24/7 solution for FIC.

“ABS is very excited to collaborate with FIC, Asia’s leading pay-TV operator with our premier Asian platform at 75°E on ABS-1 and with pre-commitments on ABS-2. Philippines is an emerging broadcasting market in Southeast Asia and we see there will be more players looking at developing localised feed for the Philippines for their channels,” said Tom Choi, CEO of ABS.

“With our local presence here in the Philippines, the Subic Bay teleport is well positioned to serve customers with a richer portfolio of innovated solutions that will help them to access satellite capacity and customised tailored solutions. Our strong value proposition and excellent coverage make ABS an ideal choice for HD and SD channel operators.”

FIC claims to be Asia’s leading pay-TV operator and believes that customising channels for local audiences and localising its playout for its channels and feeds in the Philippines will help it maintain its edge. “Asia is not one market but rather a diverse region with many countries, each with their own tastes and preferences when it comes to TV viewing,” explained Jude Turcuato, general manager of FOX International Channels Philippines. “Through this partnership with ABS I’m pleased that we can now further tailor our channels to suit Filipino viewers and service them even better.”

Turcuato has just been given a new boss in the form of Zubin Gandevia who was president of FOX International Channels Asia. Gandevia, who to date has served as FIC Asia’s COO, will have a remit will spanning 18 offices across Asia Pacific and the Middle East.